Asian stocks set to rise as focus swings to recovery prospects
By John McCrank NEW YORK (Reuters) - Asian stocks were expected to rise on Thursday, as hopes of a robust economic recovery offset concerns over flare-ups in the coronavirus pandemic, and as investors looked ahead to earnings season. Australian S&P/ASX 200 futures were up 0.85%, Japan's Nikkei 225 futures added 0.16%, and Hong Kong's Hang Seng index futures rose 0.82%
By John McCrank
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Asian stocks were expected to rise on Thursday, as hopes of a robust economic recovery offset concerns over flare-ups in the coronavirus pandemic, and as investors looked ahead to earnings season.
Australian S&P/ASX 200 futures
E-mini futures for the S&P 500
"Risk sentiment remains resilient ahead of next week's key earnings reports," said NAB economist Tapas Strickland.
He singled out earnings from JPMorgan, Citigroup, and Wells Fargo on Tuesday, as well as tech heavyweights of Microsoft and Netflix on Thursday.
Demand for technology stocks lifted U.S. shares and helped the Nasdaq add 1.44% to 10,492.50, its fourth record closing high in five days.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average <.DJI> rose 0.68% and the S&P 500 <.SPX> gained 0.78%.
MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan <.MIAPJ0000PUS> closed 1.29% higher, helped by Chinese stocks, which have rallied for seven-straight days. Emerging market stocks rose 1.67%.
The passing of the key technical threshold for gold came as the U.S. coronavirus outbreak crossed a grim milestone of over 3 million confirmed cases, and as seven states reported record numbers of new infections.
In separate appearances, three U.S. Federal Reserve officials said the pace of the economic recovery may be stalling, though another, St. Louis Fed President James Bullard, said on CNBC he felt many lost jobs will be regained by year's end.
Global coronavirus cases exceeded 12 million on Wednesday, according to a Reuters tally.
Investors will look to U.S. jobless claims on Thursday for the latest snapshot of U.S. recovery.
In China, inflation readings are on tap and expected to show factory-gate prices continued their declines in June.
(Reporting by John McCrank; Editing by Sam Holmes)
This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.
By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States
BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.